18-year-old Aloe-Bridget Namoa has been arrested by a counter-terrorism investigation squad of NSW police today morning from her home in Auburn, Sydney. NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn said Namoa would face court today afternoon.
Burn stressed the arrest was not due to any new alleged terror plot, but Namoa was now likely to be charged because police had enough evidence against her, gathered from the counter-terrorism investigation. She said the charges related to documents and items uncovered in January, and there was no new threat to the community.
“We seize material; we examine it and collate the evidence. When we are convinced that we have enough evidence to put before the court, that’s what we’ll do” she said in an interview with The Sydney Morning Herald.
Namoa is married to alleged terrorist Sameh Byda, who himself is facing three charges of collecting documents likely to facilitate terrorist acts. Police confirm that Namoa has previously been charged with multiple counts of failing to answer crime commission queries regarding why she and her husband were downloading ISIS Propaganda.
Sameh Byda, whom she married in December 2015, was arrested in January, and faced terror charges for allegedly collecting documents on how to commit a stabbing and make a bomb, the Daily Telegraph reported.
When she appeared at Parramatta Local Court earlier this month, prosecutors said she had supposedly been caught with a knife wrapped in an Islamic flag and had explicit images of beheadings, explosions and executions stored on her mobile phone.
Namoa was already on bail, having been charged earlier this month with 31 counts of failing to answer questions during a hearing of the NSW Crime Commission, an offence that carries a maximum penalty of two years’ jail. During the secret hearing, she was asked about her husband’s alleged plans to sacrifice himself, ISIS propaganda, the knife allegedly found in her handbag, the “jihadi Bonnie and Clyde” text message and plans of a terrorist act.
Burn praised the work of investigators and urged the public to continue to provide police with information.”Today is another demonstration that we are not going to go away, that we continue, no matter what, and also, I want to recognise the value of the community and the information that we continue to get through the national security hotline or Crime Stoppers,” she said.